STL Travel Tips

Handy travel tips put the best of St. Louis all within reach during your visit:

Psssst. Want to go to the theater for free? Or, spend a sunny afternoon at a luxury hotel pool with amazing Gateway Arch views without having a room? Read on to discover money-saving, surprising and timely tips to make your St. Louis visit extra special, organized and fun.

  • No ticket? No worry! Many of St. Louis’ top attractions are open to all with no general admission charge. More than 60 fascinating and fun sites welcome you for free including the world-famous Saint Louis Zoo, Science Center, Art Museum and Grant’s Farm animal preserve.
  • Introduce the kids to musical theater…for free. No need to spend a ton of money on tickets only to find that your child wants to leave before intermission. Take advantage of the first come, first served free seats — there are 1,456 available for every performance — at The Muny in Forest Park, the nation’s oldest and largest outdoor amphitheatre. Each summer, the 10,700-seat theatre offers a seven-week season of musicals starring nationally known performers, from late June until early August.
  • Book a spa treatment at the luxurious Four Seasons St. Louis and indulge many of the amenities available to the hotel’s guests. Spa clients can sun bathe poolside on the spectacular rooftop terrace that overlooks the gleaming Gateway Arch, have full access to the relaxation lounges, steam rooms, saunas and whirlpools and be served scrumptious room service selections in the spa’s relaxation lounge.
  • The early bird at the Saint Louis Zoo rides the Conservation Carousel for free. Arrive at the Zoo between 8 and 9 a.m. for a free spin aboard one of the colorful carousel’s 64 beautiful hand-carved wooden animal figures. Hop off the Carousel and head to the cheerful Children’s Zoo for complimentary admission through 9 a.m.
  • Each January, spot hundreds of wild bald eagles feeding along the Mississippi River. The best viewing spot is from the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge, the original Route 66 crossing from Illinois into Missouri that now serves as the world’s longest pedestrian/cycling-only bridge.
  • Discount travel offers, hotel packages and free event listings are available at or contact us by phone at 1-800-916-0040 to speak with a member of our visitor services team about all there is to see and do in the Gateway City.
  • Seeking an artistic, relaxing respite during your travels through Downtown St. Louis?  Citygarden, located along Market Street between 8th and 9th streets, blends lush plantings and twenty-four pieces of internationally renowned sculpture with the delights of water, stone, architecture and design. It is always open and always free.
  • Special exhibits at the Saint Louis Art Museum which require a paid ticket are always open free-of-charge on Fridays when the museum extends its hours to 9 p.m. Artsy families take note of free, hands-on art activities, family tours with complimentary guidebooks, artist demonstrations and performances every Sunday afternoon from 1 to 4 p.m. The family-friendly theme changes monthly.
  • It’s a steal! The St. Louis Cardinals and KMOX 1120 AM, the team’s flagship radio station, offer “First Pitch Tickets.” Starting at 9 a.m. on a regular season game day, the first 275 customers at the Busch Stadium Eighth Street ticket window can purchase a voucher entitling the fan to receive two tickets at $5.60 each later that day. The tickets — a virtual grab bag of locations returned to the ticket office by Cardinals players, the visiting club, sponsors and others — may be for anywhere within the ballpark, from field or terrace level to standing room only. Ten minutes before game time — at 7:05 p.m. sharp for a 7:15 p.m. game — fans will be asked to produce their picture I.D. and voucher at the “First Pitch Tickets” sign at Gate 1 on Broadway to claim their tickets and enter Busch Stadium. Tickets will be in sealed envelopes and distributed on a completely random basis.
  • Visiting the Gateway Arch in the summer? That’s peak season for visits to the nation’s tallest monument and “Journey to the Top” tram tickets sell out fast. Guarantee your ride for the day and time you want by ordering tickets in advance by visiting the web site or calling 877-982-1410.
  • If you’re a cycling enthusiast, you’ll enjoy the 77 miles of dedicated bike lanes, 120 miles of hiking and biking trails, space for bicycles on the Metrolink light rail system, and an active calendar of cycling events.

For additional information about special discount programs at St. Louis area hotels and attractions visit Explore St. Louis for money and time-saving travel tips.



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